Chart courtesy of the town of Killington
By Polly Lynn
KILLINGTON — Questions were raised at Killington’s 2015 public information meeting in March about voter participation since the town moved to adopt Australian balloting in place of floor voting on Town Meeting Day. The Selectboard decided to research the issue.
Looking at voting results from town reports from 2000 to 2014, the Board found that since the town of Killington adopted the Australian ballot, on average voter participation has more than doubled. Between 2000 and 2011 (before Australian Ballot was adopted), the average number of votes on Town Meeting Day was 172. From 2012 to 2014, the average number of votes on Town Meeting Day was 363, data showed. According to both the U.S. Census and town data, the population of Killington has not grown and thus is not a factor leading to the increase in voter participation.
“The results of the last three years demonstrate that the Australian ballot has ensured that everyone who wants to vote, can — even if they have to work on Town Meeting Day,” said Selectboard Chair Patty McGrath. “Adopting the Australian ballot has definitely strengthened the democratic process in Killington.”